“Show me any great runner and ask him how he got so strong and so fast and he will tell you that he suffered. Show me any civilization that has become strong or powerful and they will have suffered. Any civilization that makes it their point to avoid suffering is already past their prime. I feel like as a nation we have made it a point to avoid suffering”.- John Foreman.
Our natural instincts are to push back against any situation that causes us to be uncomfortable. It may be because we feel entitled to a life free of pain, suffering, or discomfort. It could be that we are natural infants in our understanding of what the Christian life is all about. It could also be that we just want the mundane, or easy way out. We have bought into the idea that we deserve to live life free of pain when it is VITAL in defining us for our future. Our pain refines us, it helps sort out our unfaithful hearts and show who we really are. It develops character and understanding and gives us access to the hearts of others who have lived in the same places of brokenness. Pain is essential to growth and becoming the people of God we must become.
New International Version (NIV)
3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.